Allopurinol inappropriate use in case of asymptomatic hyperuricemic patient causes fatal Allopurinol hypersensitive syndrome: lesson to all

Arvind Kumar, Dinesh Kansal, Usha Kumari Chaudhary, Ajay Sharma, Reena Sharma


Allopurinol is used to treat hyperuricemia (HU) in a patient of gout. It is also used to prevent HU in a patient of hematological malignancies who are about to undergo chemotherapy. Allopurinol is usually well-tolerated but it occasionally induces hypersensitivity reactions that manifest after few months of therapy. Cutaneous reactions are pruritic, erythematous, or maculopapular eruptions. Rarely fatal toxic epidermal necrolysis or Stevens-Johnson syndrome may occur. Transient leukopenia or leukocytosis, eosinophilia and elevated transaminases may also occur. HU is not a disease in itself. Its level is highly variable in the general population. Uric acid level is influenced by many factors such as dietary intake of proteins, hypertension, and obesity. Only very rarely patients of AHU may progress to gout and renal stones. Not much data is available that support HU alone in an asymptomatic patient in later life shows the diseases which are associated with HU. Sometimes only lifestyle changes, diet restrictions, alcohol restrictions, and treatment of underlying acquired cause may correct HU. Here, we are presenting a rare case of allopurinol hypersensitivity syndrome in an AHU patient. Our aim is to raise awareness among physicians so that they avoid using unnecessarily allopurinol in AHU patients and also titrate the dose of allopurinol in patients of renal failure. Risk-benefit ratio must be considered in these patients before starting allopurinol.


Allopurinol, Allopurinol hypersensitive syndrome, Asymptomatic hyperuricemia

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